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In Response to National Parks, put them on your "to see list"... by gramdjm
This is kind of a rehash of my posting from a month or two ago.
We've been hiking/camping in NP's for 40 years. Now that we're retired, we spend 2-3 weeks in a park at a time.
We do go to Canadian parks too so can't say we always stay in this country, but for the greatest percentage of the time, we visit parks in U.S.
We spent a couple of weeks at Glacier NP last year. In Spring, we'll spend a couple of weeks in the Smoky's.
Actually, attendance at NP's had been steadily increasing. The park service has a nice pdf file you can view online showing attendance differences between 2009 and 2010. There was a slight decrease, overall, last year, but it's assumed it's the economy and gas prices. For instance, I mentioned Glacier NP. It had one of the larger drops in attendance last year. But, it's a long haul to get there. Places like the Smoky's continue to be popular. At one time, I recall a statistic that said almost half the population of the U.S. was within a long days' drive to the Smoky's, which is a major reason for popularity.